We play outdoors every day! Families are encouraged to send their child(ren) in weather appropriate clothing (such as rain pants, muddy buddy, etc) so that children can play comfortably in the elements while we are outdoors. Indoors, we engage with a variety of art materials and mediums and ask that children are sent in clothing that can become messy. Please save special clothing for special occasions!
We believe that children should have the freedom to fully engage in their play, without adults intervening and disrupting the child's process. Educators will intervene if there is a concern about safety, however we will allow children to become as dirty as they need to in order to fully engage in their play.
Your child's safety and well-being are of the greatest importance to us.
Both the indoor and outdoor environments have been thoughtfully designed to create safe environments for children to explore and play. Our licensed childcare program is regulated and monitored by Island Health. The centre has received the lowest possible risk rating from Island Health. Educators are trained in effective supervision, first aid, and are constantly reassessing the play environments to improve the quality and safety. Furthermore, careful observation of children's play allow Educators to take preventative actions as needed.
If there is a concern regarding safety, Educators will approach from a place of inquiry, working alongside children to find a solution where they can continue their play in a manner that is safe for themselves and their peers. Over time, children develop the skills they need to assess risk and make safe decisions for themselves and peers.
An outdoor environment is no more conducive to injury than an indoor play space. In fact, outdoor environments provide excellent opportunities for children to challenge themselves physically, which in turn builds confidence, skills, and a better honed ability to assess risk for themselves.
The centre is located in a quiet residential neighbourhood where the children may occasionally enjoy neighbourhood excursions on foot. However, the majority of our time will be spent on-site at the centre.
But I like when my child participates in lots of field trips!
Field trips are fun! Many adults can still fondly remember a field trip or two from their own childhood. But here is why we spend most of our time at or near the centre:
Children need time and space to fully engage in play - and lots of it! In such a busy world, it can be hard to find unstructured time and space. Our goal is to let children slow down and breathe, to play, have fun, and to just be children. "Just being children" is the most important job of the early childhood years. Children need to play in order to develop the skills that are essential as they move through grade-school and beyond.
Yes, parents provide enough nutritious food to nourish their child for the duration of the program.
The centre is a licensed in-home multi-age childcare facility which can care for up to 8 children under the guidance of 1 Early Childhood Educator. The indoor environment is in the bright lower level of a home, a space entirely dedicated to and designed for childcare. The outdoor play space is a beautiful large backyard, including a flower and vegetable garden, a large grassy area, wood chips, sandbox, mud kitchen, "construction zone", natural elements, and all surrounded by large mature Cedar and Dogwood trees.
Educators will not re-position legs on a horse to make it anatomically correct nor ever suggest that there is a 'right and wrong' way to participate in art. We strongly believe in the benefits of open-ended art, and that the process far outweighs the product.
We believe in using phrases such as: "tell me about your artwork", or "I noticed you used lots of dark lines", or "how did you feel when you were making this picture?". This encourages open-ended conversation and empowers the child as the artist to describe their work.
We offer daily art experiences and children will have the opportunity to interact with a variety of mediums.
So while you likely won't receive artwork of anatomically accurate animals or perfectly stacked snowpeople, know that your child worked on developing fine-motor skills, creativity, spacial awareness, cognitive abilities, mathematical and linguistic skills, explored elements of physics, science, enjoyed self-expression, developed perseverance, and collaborative skills.
Self-regulation and the ability to identify ones own and others emotions are huge factors in adapting to Kindergarten, both of which are skills developed through - you guessed it - PLAY and peer interaction! We will provide a variety of enriching activities which encourage skill development through songs, storytelling, games, and sensory activities that build the necessary fine motor skills to grasp writing utensils, develop vocabulary and ability to express ones self, and so on. Through varied play experiences, children will develop skills in literacy and language, mathematics, numeracy, the sciences, arts and creativity, the ability to navigate social situations and problem solving with peers, the ability to recognize self-emotions and strategies for processing those emotions, and the ability to assess risk in the play environment.